When It Is and Is Not Okay to Sleep With a Guy on the First Date

I wrote an article titled I Just Said What Every Other Woman Is Thinking. Thought Catalog published it. Negative comments ensued. Not only against me/my article, with comments about sleeping with him too soon (even though the article makes no mention of sleeping with the dude), but also against another woman who commented about first date sex, calling her “the whore who sleeps with all the guys on the first date.”

These are some of the other comments that were made in relation to first date sex:

“And maybe don’t give it up on the first date. (So sad and whorey) Get some self esteem, girl.”

“From my own perspective, if I go out with you and you sleep with me on the first night, I won’t stop it; however this will be a huge red flag – basically tells me you have little self control, and if you’d sleep with me this easy, then there have been others who it was just as easy for, and will be in the future. We might still talk, but in that moment it’s already been decided that you are not girlfriend or wife material; men like a CHALLENGE and dropping your panties as soon as you get wet basically lets us know there’s nothing to work for here, and we’d be better off investing time and energy elsewhere.”

“Marrying someone who has sex impulsively is not a great strategy either.”

“From a guys perspective, if you have sex with him that easily, you’ve had sex with lots of other guys that easily. So that is a big red flag you lack judgement and morals. Lots of guys will sleep with you, but few will stick around longterm. Just the way it is.”

Here’s the article I wrote in response to address the issue of whether men and women can or should sleep together on the first date.

Originally published by Thought Catalog at www.thoughtcatalog.com

Can OR should a woman sleep with a man on the first date? Will it affect the development of a committed relationship?

James Michael Sama is a fairly well-known dating and relationship blogger these days whose work regularly appears on sites like The Huffington Post, The Good Men Project and Thought Catalog. He says, “I think if you’ve got a true connection with someone – there is really no reason to wait.”

Yet Patti Stranger (aka the Millionaire Matchmaker), another well known relationship expert, lists the no-sex rule in her dating commandments, saying there should be “no sex before monogamy.”

Sex can complicate a relationship, particularly when each participant is looking for drastically different things (i.e. one wants a hookup, the other wants a relationship). The FWB concept is a trendy phenomenon in our culture, but how well does it work for most people? It usually meets a line where it either has to stop or move forward into a relationship. Sometimes sex brings out a natural intimacy the two people aren’t prepared for, and they don’t really know what to do with it. Feelings are hurt, and friendships dissolve.

From personal experience I know turning down sex when proposed in a friendship relationship MAY offer some benefits. I say “may” because I’ll never know what would have happened had we made the opposite choice.

One of my closest friends is a married male. When our friendship was just forming, his wife and him were experimenting with an open relationship. He asked me if I’d be open to having a sexual relationship with him. I turned him down for various reasons, one of the top reasons was my fear of how it could affect our friendship.

Turns out I may have made the right choice. About a year later, he told me he would never sleep with me now because he knows it would ruin the friendship we have, and he’s glad we never did. We now own a business together and have a solid close friendship.

Our sleeping together may have changed the course of our relationship.

Several psychologists chimed in on a Medical Daily article about first date sex. Dr. Fran Walfish, a psychotherapist, agrees first date sex definitely influences the development of a long-term relationship. She says, “It’s because strong healthy long-lasting relationships are built on good communication, ethics, mutual value system, character, and shared interests. Without taking the required necessary time to get to know the other person, this relationship becomes foundationally built on sex instead of the other important values. Shared values don’t go up and down. They are ever-present constant.”

Our modern, what seems to be sexually liberal, society still harshly judges women who have sex quickly, as made clear from the comments made in response to my initial article. In the Medical Daily article, Dr. Ramani Durvasula, a professor of psychology at California State University, Los Angeles, says, “If a woman agrees to have sex on the first date because she wants to, her partner may make unfair attributions about her (even after asking for sex) that she is not relationship material and may be of suboptimal moral character,”

Studies present a mixed bag of truth, but there is at least one study which points to the fact having sex early on in the relationship negatively affects the relationship. A 2012 study published in the Journal of Sex Research surveyed approximately 11,000 unmarried people in steady relationships. The study seemed to find that the people who had sex early on in the relationship had lower levels of relationship satisfaction, communication and stability compared with those couples who waited longer to have sex. Is that an accurate representation of people who fornicate earlier vs those who wait?

All of this leads to some mixed messages for both men and women. One of the problems may be we don’t usually know what we want. We may be open to a relationship, but not actively seeking one out. We may be opposed to a relationship, but realize we really want one when we meet someone. This is where it gets particularly difficult to determine if having sex will affect a developing relationship.

The consensus may be if you are looking for a relationship, it can help to build the relationship if you wait. But men and women are equally harming the formation of a relationship, if that’s the case; men aren’t off the hook here.

I Just Said What Every Other Woman Is Thinking

Originally published by Thought Catalog at www.thoughtcatalog.com

I had a great date with a man who is handsome, charming, educated, sensual and a gentleman. We drank wine and ate wonderful, expensive food. The date ended with a passionate kiss…and more.

We continued to talk after our date (via text), and I felt excited about seeing him again. I desired to know him better.

Before meeting in person (we’d connected over Tinder) we talked every day, and he mentioned different dates he’d like to take me on…to the movies, restaurants, etc. He seemed anxious and excited to meet me. He attempted scheduling one date that was canceled after he suffered a knee injury during a soccer game. But we quickly agreed to meet for our date another day, just a few days later. He was making every effort to see me, and I too was interested in meeting him.

After the date, while we continued to talk, his texts quickly became more infrequent. While I proposed two different times I could be available to see him again, he didn’t make an effort to commit to either date. In fact, he never even hinted at a desire to want to see me again.

I’ve been on dates in which men seemed excited to be out with me (either by verbalizing it or even just in how they fondly looked at me), so much so that they were planning our next date practically the minute our date ended. I’ve been on dates that were more lukewarm. Maybe the actual date seemed to go fine, but afterwards I hardly heard from the man again. This is that kind of date. I thought the date went great. And I think this man would be willing to go out with me again. Once he was bored, or desired some companionship for a night, he’d probably ask me out again, but he wasn’t excited about me.

His lack of communication, and his unwillingness to at least say “I want to see you again” were all the proof I needed. In this dating world, I don’t want lukewarm.

I sent him a text and told him we want different things. I want to get to know someone. I won’t contact him any longer.

He shot back with what seemed an irritated response explaining he was in the middle of a party and he didn’t have time for this. He said he’d been working long hours, and he’d been busy. He probably was busy. We’re all busy. But when you are excited about dating someone, you make time. I’m sure when he received my message he felt pressured, and as though it was too soon for me to be making such claims. We’d just met each other. And he is right. But if he were to take a serious look at his interest in me, I think even he’d have to agree “he’s just not that into me.”

I shared this story with a close friend who is also dating. She shared she too has a similar situation with someone who seems lukewarm about her. When I told her what I told my date, she said, “You said everything I’m thinking, but that I’m too afraid to say.” She said wouldn’t it be easier just to never respond to him again if he does text me.

Every other woman thinks the very same things I was, but they don’t want to say it. They’re worried they’ll seem crazy if they express their emotions. They also don’t want to say what they are thinking because they want to hold on to the hope that maybe the guy will come around. Or they make excuses for why he doesn’t seem interested at the time….he’s busy, he’s sick, etc. They don’t want to close the door, just in case.

But haven’t you ever been told when one door closes, another opens?

In this age of Tinder and other online dating applications, we seem to spread ourselves thin, talking to too many people at one time, and not focusing on getting to know just one, or even just a few. When you think back to some of your earlier relationships, the kind you had in school, you spent every day with those people, and those relationships were nurtured and grew because you did talk everyday and even saw each other everyday. We struggle to create the same types of relationships as adults, but we have find ways to make it happen.

We all seem to want those lukewarm people hanging around, just to fill the time or have someone to call if we get lonely. Someone to hook up with, or go out on a date with. But are you wasting your time by putting energy into someone who is never going to work out to be anything but a shallow, casual relationship? It seems your time and energy would be better spent on doing things for yourself, or exploring new ways which allow you to grow, or finding new people to date who may actually be interested in you.

After I told him what I was feeling it was though a weight had been lifted off of me. I was free to focus on somebody else who might be more excited to get to know me. I don’t want to wait around, and hope he might eventually become more interested. I don’t want to hope I might hear from him again, or he might ask me out again.

If a man is excited about getting to know you, you will know. If you are questioning their interest, they just aren’t that into you.

Why Calling Mo’Ne Davis a Slut Is and Isn’t an Equality Issue

Originally published by Thought Catalog at www.thoughtcatalog.com

Earlier this week Joey Casselberry, a Bloomsburg University baseball player, faced some heat when he publicly (via Twitter) called Mo’Ne Davis, a 13-year-old Little League player, a slut. Apparently what inspired his Twitter tirade was the fact Disney is making a movie about the remarkable young, female Little League player.

Wait! What? A slut? She’s 13 for god’s sake, is what most people are saying.

Women’s rights advocates are screaming, “You would never use such a term for a man,” and “No female should be called a slut.”

On the side of the equality war, we’re trying to fight against shaming women for their sexuality, and slut should be a word banned from our vocabulary. This makes it an equality issue because clearly he wouldn’t use such a term towards a male player, and if he did it would likely be a term of endearment because men are often praised for being sluts.

So yes, it’s a hit towards equality in some ways.

But what it really boils down is a humanistic issue. A bad decision on his part. We should all support empowering women, but it really isn’t about what he called her. It’s that he called another human being any word. Male or female. My guess is this guy doesn’t respect women highly because he used such a term, and I’m glad he received the backlash he did because I’m sure it was a humiliating experience to the young girl. At her young age she shouldn’t be dealing with such bullying. At his core I’m also sure this guy has many redeeming qualities (hopefully) and I hope this is a harsh lesson he’ll use to encourage some personal growth. Maybe it will not only make him rethink how he talks about another human being (especially publicly), but maybe he will also reconsider how he talks about women in general.

Sidenote: Shortly after the incident, and after Casselberry was kicked off his team because of the offensive tweet, Davis showed just what a remarkable young lady she is by asking the Bloomsburg University baseball team to consider re-instating Casselberry, saying, “Everyone makes mistakes. Everyone deserves a second chance. I know right now he’s really hurt, and I know how hard he’s worked just to get to where he is right now.” Classy move on her part, and hopefully everyone will go out and support her Disney movie when it comes out. This may just be the publicity she needs (and deserves)!